‘Snowfall’ Season 6, Episode 1-2 SPOILER Review/Recap
Capitalism breeds greed, violence, and innovation. The more you gain, the more you destroy yourself and the things around you. Ronald Wilson Reagan was the epitome of this. The actor-turned-president’s term as the Head of State is one of many controversial terms in U.S. history. The false war on drugs or crack epidemic began under his watch. The CIA lost funding, and in an effort to “fight against communism,” they turned to selling cocaine in the U.S. In the eyes of some it’s just a conspiracy theory but books like Gary Webb’s Dark Alliance tell the tale vividly. FX’s Snowfall – now in its sixth and final season – tells this story in a very detailed manner. After its premiere last night, it’s safe to say we are in for one hell of an ending.
We remember the end of season five. Franklin (Damson Idris) has lost $73 million, and greed has his aunt Louie (Angela Lewis) and uncle Jerome (Amin Joseph) looking to go their way and break up the family business that they’ve built with Franklin. This causes Franklin to rob their stash houses thus slowly beginning an imminent war which is where season six begins.
We see a little girl on her porch waiting for her father to come home. Her grandfather comes and sees her, and goes to her father’s workplace only to find him dead. This on top of losing money takes Jerome on a spiral. Franklin on the other hand asks Veronique (Devyn Tyler) to help launder his money and brings her to the new stash house nobody knows about. At first, she says no, but eventually she gives in to help him. He goes to Big Deon (Quincy Chad) and offers him a cheaper deal than Jerome did. Jerome finds out and figures he can possibly use this as a means of getting his money back.
Franklin’s stealing of that money has crippled Jerome and Louie’s business. They are trying to do a deal with a client from St. Louis and don’t have the means to do so. Kane (DeVaughn Hamilton) has also awakened fully and he wants revenge. He tells Franklin he wants Jerome and Louie and lights a fire under Franklin for him to find them and Buckley. Kane may or may not walk again so he wants some form of payback, and not just money, he wants blood.
Jerome and Louie go to Buckley (Brandon Jay) and ask him for help getting their money back. Franklin and Jerome have a small conversation about their problems and Franklin explains in simple terms that he saw this coming from a mile away. He knew the greed would get to his uncle and aunt, and stayed prepared just in case. When Black Diamond (Christine Horn) and Dallas (Taylor Polidore) go to make the drop, they are greeted by Officer Neely (Dash Pomeratz) Buckley, and Jerome shortly after Jerome in an effort to get the $3 million dollars Franklin stole, beats Black Diamond to death with a pistol in a very graphic scene.
On the other hand, Teddy (Carter Hudson) is still reeling and trying to cover his bases. Franklin also has somebody looking into Teddy’s entire family so he can find Teddy. Teddy’s acting as if he has no idea what’s going on with Franklin and continuing to play Louie and Jerome. He drained Franklin’s accounts, but he needed help to do so. I have my own theory on that, but it’s safe to say Teddy broke up this family business on purpose. This is partially why Franklin’s mother Cissy (Michael Hyatt) is trying to take down Teddy and the CIA. She gives a speech about the U.S. and how it treats black people, which as true as it is now, was even more true in Reagan’s America. Franklin is on a hunt for Teddy, trying to keep his business alive, and teetering on a civil war within his family.
Episode two of this Snowfall double feature is a bit more complex in its nature. Cissy introduces Franklin to the KGB and Franklin explains everything he can about Teddy and the CIA. Anybody that knows anything about the 80s and the Cold War knows this is essentially treason, but this is a war Teddy started with Franklin. Teddy has been using cocaine to fund Reagan’s war on communism, and topple governments in Central America. Thus continuing to piss off a very historic enemy of the U.S.: Russia. It was only a matter of time before they got involved with Franklin after Teddy turned on him.
Franklin also sends Veronique to go meet her mother Cassandra (Tamara Taylor) in an effort to help him find out who, what, and why his money was taken from his offshore accounts. Again, this in a way goes all the way to the top. The U.S. basically used drug lords and then would steal their assets and money after they were done with them. Franklin Saint even as a U.S. citizen was no different. He got the same treatment as Noreaga, Escobar, and the like essentially when it came to money and assets. She explains it was a two-person job regardless of if Teddy was CIA or not.
Cissy tries to get Jerome and Franklin to broker peace. She sits down with Jerome and talks him into a meeting with Franklin. After a meeting with Skully (De’aundra Bonds) Jerome decides to talk to Cissy and ultimately meet Franklin. The meeting with Franklin takes place in a diner. The two men exchange insults and it goes bad when Franklin mentions Louie. Jerome tells Franklin he tried to raise him right, and do right by him, and Franklin tells him the truth… He’s the reason Jerome has what he has, he helped build his empire and did right by his uncle. Louie got greedy and Jerome rolled on his nephew for her. Jerome hits Franklin and pretty much begs Franklin to shoot him. He’s tired, he’s exhausted, and doesn’t want to keep looking over his shoulder. Franklin loves his uncle so instead of catching a murder charge, he walks away.
Oso (Sergio Peris-Menchata) is working with agents trying to take down Teddy, and he’s also trying to help Franklin with his Teddy situation. They all want the same thing as they all in some way kind of got screwed by Teddy. Teddy is looking for Parissa (Tiffany Lonsdale) after she went missing at the end of Snowfall season 5. He finds her in a holding cell in the LA county jail. She wasn’t harmed just taken to drive Teddy crazy as the KGB continues to mess with him. Oso wants to know who’s after him and brokers a deal with him to find Teddy and hopefully figure out a peaceful ending to this war.
Snowfall’s writer’s room has leaned into the “everybody is unlikable” phase. There has been a lot of foreshadowing in this show about characters turning on each other. Jerome and Louie were always going to turn simply because Louie is greedy. She had been wanting more and gunning for more, and talking about leaving Franklin for about two or three seasons. They turned full heel between season five and these first two episodes. Jerome is a troubled and conflicted man, he’s blinded by love and a false sense of loyalty. They also are trying to make Franklin unlikable even though he has the best reason to do what he’s doing. Dave Andron and Jeanie Daniels understand conflict and not having to exactly have a protagonist. They’ve put together some very good writing so far.
Ben Younger understands conflict and having to fight internally. There’s a great story being told in Snowfall but in order for it to be told correctly, you have to understand the characters. These are all people that in some way are dealing with one of the seven deadly sins, mainly greed. This is a tale of a government breaking down Central America, a community, and a family at its core. It’s also based on partial fact. There will be a lot to unpack as the season moves forward. These episodes of Snowfall got a lot of the point across though.
Overall, this was a great start to the final season of Snowfall. The opening scene with Joanne (Londyn Carter) was powerful. There are often conversations about black fathers not being in the home, but the crack epidemic had a lot to do with that. Men were dying protecting money, drugs, and their turf. Snowfall is depicting this scenario that still is affecting people 40 years later. John Singleton came up with an amazing story and I’m hoping it ends right. – Rascal F. Kennedy
Ep. 1 “Fallout” – 8/10
Ep. 2 “The Sitdown” – 9/10
Snowfall premieres on FX Wednesdays 10/9c and the next day on Hulu.